M A I N   N E W S

Jamat-ud-Dawa not linked to bomb plot: Pak
K.J.M Varma

Islamabad, August 15
Denying as “absurd” reports that the Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD), headed by the Lashker-e-Taiba founder Hafeez Saeed, was involved in the plot to blow up planes, Pakistan today said that the group had no links with the conspiracy and it had no plans to ban the outfit.

“There is no link with any Pakistani entity, proscribed or not. These are all speculative stories,” Pakistan Foreign Office spokesperson Tasnim Aslam told reporters here.

Aslam said there was no connection between the recent house arrest of Saeed and the plot to blow up the planes.

Saeed was detained in his house in Lahore on August 10 for some comments he had made and not for any links with the terror plot in Britain, she said. “Hafeez Saeed has not been connected with any terrorist plot or terrorist incident. Let me clarify that.”

She said British Al-Qaida suspect Rashid Rauf, whose arrest in Pakistan is believed to have uncovered the conspiracy, had nothing to do with the charities involved in rehabilitation work after last October’s deadly quake.

“These are all absurd stories. The objective is to malign Pakistan and to cast a shadow on Pakistan’s efforts to uncover and foil this terrorist plot,” Aslam said.

She said it was “ridiculous” to claim that funds meant for earthquake relief had been diverted. “These are all fabricated stories, somebody is cooking them,” she added.

Asked if Pakistan had any plans to ban JuD, which was already outlawed in the USA, Aslam said, “The US has proscribed JuD. We do not have any evidence of the JuD’s involvement in any terrorist activity. Neither the US government has shared any evidence with us or the reasons why they banned it.”

When asked whether the Pakistan government has investigated JuD’s involvement in the plot, she said Rauf has not been found involved in any relief or charity work in the earthquake-hit areas.

Aslam also denied that any foreigners who came for relief work had joined militant groups to undergo training. “It is absolutely baseless. We have not heard any such report. No there is no connection,” she said.

About the plot to blow up planes, Aslam declined to reveal the number of arrests made in Pakistan. She, however, said the plot was real and the action taken was necessary. — PTI





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